May 8, 2003

The 12-5 Rule and Overall Security

On April 1, the 12-5 Rule went into effect, which dictates certain security requirements for aircraft weighing 12,500 pounds or more. Richard Van Gemert, president, New World Jet Corporation, says the change "hasn’t had a major impact on us – it’s like background noise. They are things we have to do … details that have to be taken care of."

Because much of the 12-5 Rule contains sensitive security information, the details have only been disclosed on a "need to know" basis. Van Gemert explains the regulations basically track who is in control of the plane and if there is any risk in the manifest of the load. He says what has caused the stir among those that must comply with the new rule is, "In our industry, we never like change. But once you get on with it, put it in place, it’s just another one of those details you have to take care of."

PAMA president Brian Finnegan says he is "very disappointed in the direct final rule from the TSA. It would be a hope that such a rule would only be used in extreme and valid situations." While Finnegan agrees there needs to be a system to prevent terrorists from direct access to aircraft, he says there should be a process by which maintenance technicians and other airmen can address the charges against them. "It’s not like we’re talking about a ’nice to have privilege,’" he says. "This is a career, a reputation, and livelihoods and well-being are based on the integrity of the certificate. To take it away based on suspicion, without any due process, is tantamount to government heavy-handedness."

Midcoast Aviation vice chairman and NATA chairman Gary Driggers says, "Security is one of those things that all of our members are aware of, and are all trying in their own way to come up with a way to solve the general aviation security issue before it’s imposed on us in such a way that it may be difficult for us to comply." Immediately after 9/11, Midcoast Aviation implemented its own security procedures, basically "locking down" the facility, especially airfield access. The FBO now uses a sign-in and sign-out procedure, cameras, and a higher fence which was installed by airport management.

AS3/GSE Set for Vegas

The Aviation Services & Suppliers Supershow (AS3) and GSE International Expo will be held May 13-15 in Las Vegas. The one-stop exhibit hall will be centered around the annual conventions of the National Air Transportation Association and the Professional Aviation Maintenance Association; seminars for the ground support sector will also be held. Learn more at:;; or,